Men's Tennis Heads To Los Angeles To Face No. 18 USC And No. 2 UCLA
March 27, 2002
ON TAP: The Arizona State men's tennis team (8-5, 1-0 Pac-10) will jump back into Pac-10 competition, travelling to 18th-ranked USC (12-4, 0-1 Pac-10) on Friday, March 29 at 1:30 p.m. and second-ranked UCLA (14-1, 1-0 Pac-10) on Saturday, March 30 at 12:00 p.m.
LAST TIME ON THE COURT: Arizona State split their two duals at the Pepperdine Invitational, falling 4-0 to 11th-ranked Pepperdine and beating 26th-ranked Washington, 4-2. Against host Pepperdine, the Waves secured the doubles point by winning two of the three matches and then won the first three singles matches that were completed to clinch the match. ASU doubles duo of Chris Stewart and Olivier Charroin did win their match at the No, 3 slot to improve their unbeaten record to 10-0. ASU bounced back with a strong 4-2 victory over Pac-10 foe Washington, improving its all-time record against UW to 13-1. Arizona State gained the early edge by winning the doubles point over Washington, claiming two of the three matches and then captured three of the five singles matches that were completed. Mirza Duranovic, Matt Klinger and Clinton Letcher earned points for Arizona State with singles wins.
DOUBLES ADVANTAGE: Arizona State has won the doubles point in nine of their 13 duals this year. They are a combined 25-10, including a 11-1 mark at the No. 3 slot. The 24th-ranked duo of Mitchell Bowen and Matt Klinger hold an 8-4 record at the No. 1 slot and a 9-4 overall record. At the No. 2 and 3 positions, 41st-ranked Olivier Charroin and Chris Stewart have yet to be knocked off with an unblemished 10-0 dual record and 11-0 overall.
HEAD COACH LOU BELKEN: In his 20th season as head coach, Lou Belken has produced 14 All-Americans, including NCAA singles champion and ATP professional Sargis Sargsian. Belken also becomes only the 12th coach (currently only the second active) in Arizona State athletic history to achieve the 20 season milestone. Belken, the 1999 Pacific-10 Conference Coach of the Year and Region VIII Coach of the Year, has guided the Sun Devils to NCAA postseason berths in 11 of the last 15 seasons, including a berth into the NCAA round of 16 in 1988, '90, '91 (quarterfinals), '95 and '99.
HOME SWEET HOME: Over the past five seasons, including a 6-2 record this year, Arizona State holds a 66-27 (.710) overall dual record at the Whiteman Tennis Center.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS: Senior Mirza Duranovic has claimed 97 career singles victories ... senior Matt Klinger holds a .694 career winning percentage in singles, recording a 75-33 mark ... in its eight victories this year, ASU has outscored its opponents 48-7 ... ASU's next four duals (all Pac-10) are on the road before returning home for its final three duals ... Coach Lou Belken is five wins shy of 250 ... the duals against USC and UCLA will mark the sixth and seventh matches this year against top-25 competition.